(Yicai Global) Jan. 6 -- Didi Chuxing, the world's biggest ride-sharing company which absorbed Uber China's brand and operations into its business last year, has denied a report saying it plans to shed half its workforce, the deepest job cuts since the startup launched two and a half years ago.
The Beijing-based firm's public relations manager dismissed the report as sheer nonsense, saying "Didi is currently recruiting top-tier talent to join the company from all around the globe." Didi's own figures show that it has more than 6,000 employees across different divisions.
A report on tech news website 36kr.com, China's TechCrunch, cited sources saying that Didi is shedding employees. One informed source even said that half the staff across the business will be laid off. Headhunters have also detected signs of what is coming, according to the report.
Didi's "leaders said the company is going through structural optimization and doesn't need so many people, implying we find new jobs outside the company," one employee and some of his colleagues were told by a line manager, according to the report. Employees to be laid were mostly recruited in mid-2016, meaning that their six-month probation period will end some, the employee said.
Another informed source told 36kr.com that city managers and those at higher levels have all received job cut notices. "Next, human resource managers probably will talk with employees one by one and fire them on the grounds that they didn't pass the probation," the source said.
"A lot of Didi's employees contacted us recently," a headhunter told 36kr.com. They even include managers. "We get queries from them almost every day and some of them said that the company was cutting jobs recently on a large scale."
According to rules introduced by the central and local governments recently, some major cities have imposed strict restrictions on ride-hailing drivers and vehicles.
"After the government issued the e-hailing policy two months ago, we knew that massive job cuts would happen soon," said a headhunter whose company is trying to get a list of all the employees affected. His agency may set up a dedicated business line for laid-off Didi workers.